by Ashley Lodato
These are a few of our favorite things: Olivia Hsu. Yoga. Climbing. Smith Rock. Active jewelry. So when we hear that we can find all of our favorite things together in one place at one time, well, we kind of get a little bit giddy.
Such will be the situation on the weekend of Sep 29-Oct 1, when Bronwen Jewelry ambassador Olivia Hsu hosts a "She Moves Mountains Climbing and Yoga Weekend" for women at Smith Rock, a high-desert Central Oregon climbing mecca. The path of totality passed right over Smith Rock at the end of August, but nothing else will eclipse this fabulous chance to bend, breathe, stretch, reach, pull down, mantle, pinch, smear, laugh, and generally have a totally rad time with a group of other women.
Climbing with women is an empowering experience. On the rock, women tend to offer support and reassurance, as well as gentle encouragement to push one's pre-conceived notions of fear and boundaries. In a sport that was for decades dominated by men, an all-women's climbing group says both "you go, girl!" and "we're here to stay." Whether you've never experienced the joy of climbing with other women, or you participate regularly in all-women climbing trips, the She Moves Mountains clinic has something to offer you. For more information about the yoga and climbing weekend with Olivia Hsu, visit She Moves Mountains.
Bronwen and Olivia have been connected for many years, through Olivia's contributions as a Bronwen ambassador (she was our first!). It helps that Olivia shares Bronwen's passion for yoga and climbing, and it sure doesn't hurt that Olivia's gorgeous looks are a perfect canvas for Bronwen's gorgeous earrings, necklaces, and bracelets. But we mostly love Olivia because she is both a badass and a down-to-earth gal. She's adventuresome yet rooted, energetic yet tranquil. Olivia is inspired, and interesting, and interested, and is just plain fun to be around.
Olivia is an awesome role model for young girls; she's sensible and fearless, she's focused, and she lets nothing arbitrary hold her back from living the life she envisions or from achieving the goals she sets for herself. And like young girls, Olivia enjoys showing a little Bronwen gleam of silver or gold while she's balanced on some of Smith Rock's volcanic welded tuff or jamming her hands into its killer cracks.
Although rings and bracelets aren't always the most climbing-friendly pieces of jewelry (our soft and durable Swim Wraps and Ribbon Wraps are an exception, however), much of Bronwen Jewelry seems like it was tailor-made for a day on the cracks. Ummm...because it was.
For a bit of delicate sparkle, put on a Tiny Charm Necklace for women or for girls, or choose your favorite Tiny Charm Earrings. Any necklace from our Active Jewelry line is conducive to a day on the cliffs; we know--we've tested them all! We haven't yet proven that wearing a Bronwen necklace or pair of earrings helps you climb any better, but we know we feel better--more confident--when sporting a little bling, and as anybody who has ever been on a rock face with sewing machine legs knows, confidence is everything in climbing.
If you're not a climber and you come to enjoy Smith Rock's many beautiful hiking trails, you're in for a treat. Not just because you get to explore the varied terrain of the park's 650 acres, but also because you can wear any piece of Bronwen Jewelry you want! You'll be the envy of other hikers when they see how seamlessly you pair hiking shorts and a quick-dry shirt with some colorful bracelets or shiny rings.
Forgive us if we go on and on about Smith Rock, but we really love this place. On any given day you might find climbers on the rocks, kayakers surfing waves on the Crooked River below the crags, slackliners dancing across thin webbing high in the air, and hikers, mountain bikers, runners, and horseback riders exploring the many trails that wind through the park's riparian area and high bluffs. There are endless ways to experience Smith Rock.
In 2012, a massive streamflow restoration initiative (the largest in Oregon's history!) restored 190 cubic feet per second of streamflow to the Crooked River, which had long suffered from poor water quality and a degraded ecosystem. This initiative strengthened the region’s agricultural economy while permanently improving conditions for fish, wildlife, and recreation.
This project isn't the only one to benefit the Smith Rock area. Since 1993, the Smith Rock Group has been hosting an annual Smith Rock Spring Thing, where more than 200 volunteers work to replace wooden steps, rebuild rock walls, clean out water drainage on trails, repair fences, prep for bike parking areas, pull weeds, and work in the camping area. In times of increased use at Smith Rock, work parties like the Spring Thing help keep Smith Rock stable, tidy, and beautiful.
We hope to see you at the She Moves Mountains Climbing and Yoga Weekend. And since you'll be in the neighborhood, be sure to stop by our Bronwen Jewelry workspace and retail shop in downtown Bend. We're in a sunny second-floor studio at 55 NW Minnesota Ave. We look forward to your visit.